When the Department of Justice’s (DOJ) inspector general (IG) report is released, it “has the potential to be a bombshell,” former Deputy Assistant Attorney General Thomas H. Dupree Jr. said Wednesday on Fox News’ “Your World with Neil Cavuto.”
The report — expected to be made public June 4 and to discussed during a June 5 meeting of the Senate Judiciary Committee — will review the FBI’s investigation of 2016 Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server to conduct official business as secretary of state.
Then-FBI Director James Comey cleared Clinton, the 2016 Democratic presidential nominee against President Donald Trump, of prosecution in July 2016 despite the presence of hundreds of emails to and from her that contained classified information.
“I think this IG report has the potential to be a bombshell,” Dupree told guest host Maria Bartiromo. “I think, depending on what the IG finds went on behind the scenes in 2016, it has the potential for changing the narrative a bit.”
Although the IG report “obviously will not shut down” special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into allegations of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia, Dupree predicted the report “very well could change the political conversation we’re having.”
Trump and his campaign have been the target of mainstream media speculation.
“I think the White House views this at least as having the potential to turn the tables a bit, to put the spotlight off of the White House and the campaign staff and instead put it on the Justice Department and what went on behind closed doors in 2016,” Dupree said.
Bartiromo noted that the last time that Horowitz released a report, he recommended the termination of former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe after finding that McCabe lied to investigators. Attorney General Jeff Sessions followed Horowitz’s recommendation and fired McCabe in March, hours before his retirement with a generous tax-funded pension.
When Bartiromo asked Dupree if he believed Horowitz would issue more criminal referrals in his upcoming report, Dupree replied, “Yeah, this is an IG who is clearly not afraid to throw some punches. He is not afraid to make strong recommendations.”
Dupree said he found Horowitz “absolutely independent” from political pressure, despite some early concerns over his appointment by former President Barack Obama.
“They said, ‘Is this, you know, an Obama appointee? Is this a holdover guy? Does he have the credibility and the independence to render an independent verdict?’ And I think his work so far shows that he does,” Dupree insisted. “So I think I and many other folks are going to be very, very interested in what he reports next.”
If Horowitz should issue some criminal referrals, Dupree noted that it would be up to prosecutors to follow through on them.
“I think one difference is that normally when prosecutors make a charging decision, they are doing it on the basis of evidence that is nonpublic. In this case, what’s going to be very interesting, Maria, is that the IG is probably going to lay all of his evidence,” Dupree emphasized.
Then the American people effectively will be looking over the prosecutor’s shoulders and saying, ‘Hey, this looks like there might be something here. Why are you not going to indict?'”